While 2014 has been a big year for plug-in vehicle sales – the biggest ever, in fact – the overall numbers are still small. In fact, a new study by The Research Capsule says that sale are "geographically inconsistent" and that only five countries will end the year with more than 10,000 EV sales.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has said that releasing monthly sales numbers allows the media, "to read all sorts of nonsense into the deliveries." He said that with the company's irregular delivery schedule – 1,000 in a country one month, only a handful the next – the spikes and valleys would not give an accurate picture of the company's actual orders or demand. But, when there's no transparency, people will go looking for answers – or nonsense.
Last month, Nissan and BMW helped stem a disconcerting (for green-car watchers, at least) trend of declining year-over-year sales, as increased demand for the Japanese and German automakers' plug-in models made November slightly less painful than October. The year-over year decline of hybrid, plug-in and diesel sales narrowed to 10 percent in November from 13 percent in October, as Americans bought more than 43,000 new green cars. Last month's plug-in sales reversed their temporary decline, incr
With neighbor France reconsidering support for diesel vehicles, Germany is also staking its claim in an electric-powered automotive future. This isn't news – Chancellor Angela Merkel has been promoting the idea of a million EVs on German streets by 2020 despite slow sales for a while now and VW is sort of on board – but there will need to be some work done to make it happen. Only about 24,000 EVs have been sold in Germany.
When you talk to people in the plug-in vehicle industry, one theme you hear repeatedly is that the more plug-in cars that are out there, the better things are for everyone. One reason is that more EVs build a need for more public chargers, and more chargers mean more people see that plugging in is feasible. But there's still something to be said for old-fashioned competition, and in the sales race between the two long-running plug-in vehicles in the US, the Nissan Leaf is resoundingly beating th
Most Of Those Are Due To Popular Leaf, Which Has Sold 67,000 In US
The all-electric Renault Zoe sold 10,000 units during its first year on sale and the French automaker has sold a total of about 51,500 EVs since starting sales of its four-vehicle EV lineup in 2011. Renault's collection also includes the Twizy two-seater, the Fluence sedan and the Kangoo van – just look at the awesome concepts from 2009 in the gallery above. Throw in the fact that the Nissan Leaf has sold around 150,000 around the world and some sales of the e-NV200 delivery van, and we ge
Low Gas Prices Might Actually Create Buying Opportunity
It's been a rough year for green car manufacturers. To many consumers, it appears that so-called green vehicles cost more and are more challenging to operate (limited range, low availability of "exotic" fuels, etc.) And with gasoline prices plummeting, American consumers are much less likely to spend more for a green vehicle.
How happy were those Kia hamsters last month? We're guessing they were pretty pleased, because reports are out that the South Korean automaker sold 123 Kia Soul electric vehicles in North America during the model's first month of sales on the continent. Now crank up that funky music.
CEO Elon Musk Says, 'Media Tends To Read All Sorts Of Nonsense Into The Deliveries'
While most automakers that sell vehicles in the US release a flurry of numbers at the beginning of every month to tell us how many cars and trucks they've sold, Tesla Motors has resisted following the herd. This can be frustrating for those of us who like to look at some cold, hard numbers, but CEO Elon Musk has a good explanation for why he won't play the sales figures game.
"Help me help you!" Tom Cruise's title character pleaded repeatedly in the movie Jerry Maguire. That sentiment could be said by appears to be echoed by a UC Davis study that looks at why many car dealers are loathe to sell plug-in vehicles and how they can be, uh, helped.
What do you charge for a vehicle you're going to lose money on? If you're Mercedes-Benz and the vehicle in question is the B-Class Electric Drive, you offer it for lease for just 399 euros ($498) a month with a down payment of 8,473 euros ($10,582). If Daimler was going to price it honestly, it seems, the number would have to be a lot higher.
California Start-Up Keeping Up With Nissan and Leaf Sales
Nissan sold its 50,000th Leaf a total of two years and two months after introducing the EV to dealerships. Tesla isn't as established as Nissan, and its Model S - with its higher levels of luxury and performance - costs multiple times more than the Leaf. Consider the Tesla's starting price of $70,000-plus (and easily much more with a bigger battery and a few upgrades), and compare that to the Leaf's base MSRP of just a bit over $30,000 before its 2013 price cut. It would make sense, then, that i
Is It Now Ready To Compete With Top Seller Nissan Leaf?
In early 2013, the Nissan Leaf shed a massive $6,500 from its $35,200 base price to offer a new starting price of $28,800. Since then, we have seen numerous other plug-in vehicles get smaller price tags, from the Honda Fit EV (lower lease price) to the Chevrolet Volt (around $5,000 lower) to the Mitsubishi i (a $6,130 drop). Last year, Ford lowered the $39,200 price of the Focus Electric by around $4,000, but that hasn't been enough to get the Ford EV to really compete, saleswise, with other plu
Fans of small victories will appreciate the "progress" that Americans made with their purchases of green-car vehicles last month. Automakers and everyone else, though, will scratch their heads. That's because green-car sales had their fourth straight down month in September, as Americans purchased about 42,000 hybrids, plug-ins and diesels last month. And while the deficit compared to last year wasn't as steep as August's 11 percent year-over-year decline, sales were still down 9.6 percent and c
After 19 months in a row of record sales in the US, the money picture for the Nissan Leaf is steadily improving. To date (well, until the end of September), Nissan has sold 63,944 Leaf EVs in the US and a total of around 140,000 globally. The company produces the electric vehicle in three countries: Japan, the UK and the US and has sold more standard passenger EVs than any other automaker. Add all that up and you get to an EV that is just about to be profitable.
The Nissan Leaf continues its streak of "best month ever" sales with 2,881 EVs sold in September. Compared to the 1,953 sold in September 2013, that represents an increase of 47.5 percent and, as Nissan itself must be tired of saying by now, it marks yet another best month ever, same as last month and now the 19th in a row. Okay, sure, we know, Nissan will tout this run for as long as it can, but we're certainly expecting it each month, so if it ever doesn't happen, it'll be interesting to see